Verzuz is the quarantine battle series in which two artists of roughly similar stature trade hit-for-hit in a contest of the catalogues. That may work for most musicians, but some songwriters take such idiosyncratic paths that they have no peer. Perhaps that’s why D’Angelo has booked a Verzuz battle without an opponent, with the February 27th event at the Apollo Theater billed as “D’Angelo V Friends”.
An elusive singer whose inhuman perfectionism goes hand-in-hand with some extremely relatable procrastination, D’Angelo has released three exquisite albums in a stop-and-start career that spans more than 25 years. His last full-length, 2014’s Black Messiah, was one of the best albums of the decade, and since then he’s returned to the studio a couple of times, including for 2018’s “Unshaken”, which appeared in Red Dead Redemption 2. Via Stereogum, there may be more on the way; D’Angelo teased his fourth album during a recent appearance on IG Live. Then again, this is hardly the first time D’Angelo has promised that a new project is imminent, so adjust your expectations accordingly.
As for who these mysterious “Friends” might be, you’ll have to tune in to find out. The event kicks off at 8 pm ET on February 27th, and can be viewed on Instagram through Verzuz TV or via Apple Music. Previous installments included Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and Three 6 Mafia, Erykah Badu and Jill Scott, and Snoop Dogg and DMX.
Earlier this year, D’Angelo curated his own Sonos Radio Station.